2021 Rail and Road - June Edition

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VOLUME 114 No.2 June 2021

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RAILROAD THE MAGAZINE OF THE NSW BRANCH OF THE RAIL, TRAM & BUS UNION

Community Continues to Protest Bus Privatisation

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NSW BRANCH Head Office

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Locomotive Division

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RAIL & ROAD is the official journal of the NSW Branch of the Rail, Tram and Bus Union and is produced as part of the union’s communication strategy to inform and report on matters of interest to members. All editorial and advertising inquiries should be addressed to Peter O’Connor Telephone: 0430 188 116 e-mail: unionnetwork@bigpond.com Printing - Brightset, Banksmeadow, (02) 9316 4800 Art & Design - P Design - proberson@hotmail.com - Phone 0402 032 949

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Branch Executive Secretary President Assistant Secretary (Road) Assistant Secretary (Rail)

Alex Claassens Joanne McCallum David Babineau Robert Hayden

Elected Full-Time Officials Branch Secretary Alex Claassens Locomotive Divisional Secretary Farren Campbell Tram and Bus Divisional Secretary David Babineau Tram and Bus Divisional President Daniel Jaggers

Organisers Director of Organising Campaign Director Branch Organisers

Toby Warnes Dan Scaysbrook Helen Bellette Craig Turner Ricky Keehn Trent Hunter Wayne Moody

Locomotive Organisers Steve Wright Kevin Pryor Bob Newham

Industrial Officers Branch Vacant Tram & Bus Lizanne Bennett Locomotive Jeremy Gadsden Legal Officer - Locomotive Peter Matthews Communications Officer Peter O’Connor


From the Branch Secretary We recognised that 2021 was going to be an extremely busy year in relation to bargaining and negotiations across the industry. So we have employed some additional resources in the Branch to help us deal with the extra workload. As the Coronavirus pandemic continues to cause havoc in many communities we have had some pushback with some employers resisting calls from members to put in place a number of measures to protect transport workers and the public. We will continue to monitor and be vigilant in ensuring that our members in the frontline of the pandemic are protected and remain safe. As an employer we have also made sure our staff continued to be informed about developments with the Corona Virus and implemented measures within all of our offices and Jervis Bay to limit any risks of the virus. We have put in place work procedures for working from home where necessary and using technology for remote working. We continue to monitor and make adjustments to these as we continue to navigate the pandemic. As always, we will continue to represent and advocate for our members where they have been adversely or unfairly treated by their employer, including if that treatment is based on grounds related to COVID-19, vaccination, or other medical issues. The ongoing saga around Bus privatisation has continued, with Minister Constance committing

verbally to consulting with the community about any changes to routes and stops in Regions 7, 8 and 9. When this commitment was reneged on, we launched a survey through the Our Transport community seeking feedback about what routes and stops mattered the most to them. We received nearly 2,000 responses with 92% saying they had not been consulted on changes to routes and stops. The results of this survey were launched in a report on March 11 with a series of recommendations about how TfNSW should consult with communities impacted by privatisation. This report and recommendations have been sent to Minister Constance and we will engage the Our Transport community in an online action and continue to highlight the issue in the media. It was very encouraging to see more than 500 community members turn out to a rally in late May to protest the bus privatisations. The community support is there to keep our buses public, a message which the Government has trouble hearing. New Intercity Fleet Our campaign around the safety concerns in relation to the New Intercity Fleet is ongoing, with a number of wins in the Fair Work Commission and limiting the attempts to roll out the unsafe operating system.

In a shocking turn of events Transport for NSW and NSW Trains are suing their own employees in an attempt to force rail workers to crew the dangerous NIF trains. Sydney/NSW Trains EA Sydney/NSW Trains members rejected their insulting EA offer. Our members stood strong and voted in a Majority Support Determination to show the Fair Work Commission that they want to bargain, thereby forcing the agencies back to the table. I want to thank every member who voted in the MSD and every delegate who worked tirelessly to get a strong result. In this issue of Rail and Road we report on and celebrate the long and dedicated career of Allan Barden, who has been a stalwart of our union in the NSW Branch and the National Union. We wish Allan the very best in his retirement, and extend our gratitude to his years of service to the RTBU. I am also saddened to announce the passing of Bob Plain, one of the defining figures of our great union. Bob leaves a towering legacy, with thousands of workers conditions protected and we are safer and more prosperous thanks to his careful stewardship and mentorship. Our heartfelt condolences go to his family and loved ones.

In this Issue Industrial News

Workers Stop Industrial Relations Bill . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13

NIF Dispute - Train Crew Rostered to Travel Passenger. . . . . . . . 4

Bardo Steps Off the Footplate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14

Keep Big Brother out of Our Cabs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 John Holland and UGL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7

Bob Hayden Steps Down as Divisional Secretary. . . . . . . . . . . . 16

Industrial Notes NSW and Sydney Trains Agree to Bargain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

Celebrating 100 Years at Lithgow Coal Stage Signal Box . . . . . 17 Summary of Financial Reports . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18

Sydney Trains Changes Excess Shifts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9

Campaign Trail

Voestalpine Members Vote for Industrial Action . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9

Community Continues to Protest Bus Privatisation . . . . . . . . . . 29

General News

New Intercity Fleet Campaign. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31

VALE Bob Plain. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

Whistlestop. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21


Industrial News NIF Dispute – Train Crew Rostered to Travel Passenger On Monday 10 May 2021, a NIF service was gazetted in a Special Train Notice (STN1652-2021) to run between Gosford and Sydney Terminal (Passenger). This was immediately placed into dispute at Step 1 (DSP) in accordance with the 2018 Enterprise Agreement as it placed person/s in inherent danger given the passenger boarding and alighting processes on the NIF. NSW Trains responded to the procedures are in dispute. No one Further, such an arrangement DSP Step 1 stating: “NSW Trains should be boarding the NIF as presents an obvious safety risk at currently have no variation to a passenger until this dispute is the PTI, as identified in the Clemens our accreditation to operate the resolved. Safety Report. Mariyung sets in revenue service The RTBU has been advised that Members should conduct a personal and will not be doing so under STN NSW Trains have rostered crew risk assessment in all instances and 1652-2021” from Newcastle and Gosford depots consider if there is an imminent risk NSW Trains’ response did not to travel ‘passenger’ on the NIF train to your safety if you are directed to address the issue the dispute clearly as part of a rostered standby shift. board the NIF as a passenger. stipulated. Your concerns related to As a result, the RTBU has escalated Members should advise NSW Trains people (including crew travelling the existing dispute to Step 2 of the if they are not boarding the NIF. as passengers or the public) being DSP and will be strictly applying After refusing to board, if Members placed in danger while boarding or Status Quo provisions. are directed to perform duties that alighting. In light of the application of the are safe, such as boarding another The design of the NIF and NSW Status Quo provisions, any direction train in accordance with established Trains proposed operating model, to board as a passenger or operate operating procedures or remaining does not allow for current safe the NIF with passengers, is not a on stand-by, these duties should be working procedures to be followed. The new and proposed working lawful and reasonable direction. performed.

Full court rules increases payable until new deal sealed Qube Logistics must backpay two 3% increases held to be payable until it re-negotiated a rail deal, after a full Federal Court upheld a finding that re-negotiation takes place when an agreement comes into force rather than when bargaining begins. Qube Logistics (Rail) has failed to overturn Justice Geoffrey Flick’s ruling last year that its 2011 agreement required it to pay 31 workers annual 3% increases in the two years between its 2014 nominal expiry and the 2016 approval of a replacement. His judgment hinged on the meaning and context of clause 5, which set a nominal expiry date of April 1, 2014, and says that “in the absence of re-negotiation, the last increase of

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pay detailed in remuneration will be the agreed increase of pay for each anniversary such date thereafter”. Qube argued on appeal the ordinary meaning of the noun “re-negotiation” is to engage in negotiation “again or further” and the words “in the absence of re-negotiation” simply refer to the absence of that process. It said Justice Flick’s acceptance of the RTBU’s construction would “lead to the unintended consequence that, regardless of the prevailing economic conditions or the state of the business, employees could simply refuse to enter negotiations or not agree to Qube’s offers and be guaranteed wage increases of 3% per annum in perpetuity”.

Justices Mordy Bromberg, Anna Katzmann and David O’Callaghan upheld Justice Flick’s interpretation and dismissed Qube’s appeal. The full court agreed with the RTBU that the clause reflected an agreement that if the 2011 deal continued to operate beyond its nominal term, including in the event of a delay in making a replacement, employees would continue to receive guaranteed annual increases. “We reject the notion that the purpose of the provision was to provide an incentive to the parties to enter into negotiations,” the full court said, noting a future negotiations clause already committed the parties to start doing so at least two months before expiry.”

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Keep Big Brother Out Of Our Cabs The RTBU is continuing to fight to protect workers from the draconian and dangerous proposal to introduce mandatory in-cab audio and video recordings. The strong campaign by RTBU members has forced the Office of National Rail Safety Regulator (ONRSR) to verbally back down on some aspects of its proposal. ONRSR are only now recommending that rail operators should have access to in-cab recordings after a notifiable occurrence. This means they have temporarily backed down on pressing for operator access ‘exemptions’ in other situations (like live feeds or for training purposes) and instead will continue consulting with us on this. ONRSR’s recommendation is for trains only but this does not stop them adding trams/light rail in the future. Let’s be clear, our position is that we oppose the presence of in-cab video

and recording devices. However, at the moment, unless a protection exists in an enterprise agreement or elsewhere, employers can legally force in-cab recordings on us. Therefore, we have an opportunity through this consultation process with ONRSR to create strict limitations in any future legislation on the access and use of in-cab recordings. Rather than have in-cab imposed on us the way rail operators want to, if we are able to reach a sensible position with ONRSR on our terms, then we will bring that position back to RTBU members to decide to endorse or reject it. Until then, we will remain opposed. Given there is no clear detail or protection from ONRSR at this time, we call on the Transport Ministers

to oppose the proposal being put and allow more robust protections for our members to be put into proposed legislation. We understand how much this issue means to members. It is one that we all are passionate about, and we will continue fighting to make sure we get the best outcome for all RTBU members. We urge you to continue signing the RTBU petition rejecting the Office of National Rail Safety Regulator’s (ONRSR) draconian and dangerous proposal for mandatory in-cab surveillance on trains and trams, and contact Australia’s Transport Ministers before their meeting to discuss a proposal from rail safety regulator to make it compulsory for rail operators to install audio and video recording devices in the cabins of trains to monitor train drivers.

Sydney and NSW Trains Stripping Conditions via Corporate Structures Review Sydney and NSW Trains advised the RTBU of their intention of transferring an extremely large portion of their salaried employees to Transport for NSW (TfNSW) Award and the commencement of consultation. The proposed review is of great concern to the impacted employees. It will result in Sydney and NSW Trains stripping employees of their conditions under the applicable enterprise agreements to the Award, an inferior industrial instrument. These employees will lose conditions such as those attached to the Deed, employee opal pass, picnic day, and impact on incremental pay increases and potentially superannuation for those in a preserved superannuation fund (SAS). The combined unions have held several member meetings where the membership established the big-ticket items and fully endorsed the union to fight for these items, which were:

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1. No forced Redundancies for 5 years for transferring staff. 2. An extension of the Opal Card or the expedition of Gold Passes for transferring staff. 3. The Deed to follow staff to TFNSW or compensation for the loss of entitlements. The membership further identified additional items that the review would impact, and these were placed in an issue’s register and issued to Sydney and NSW Trains. On Monday, 26 April 2021, the RTBU and ASU Representatives met with the Sydney and NSW Trains Senior Executive to deliver the message from our members and remind them of their obligations to mitigate or avoid adverse impacts because of workplace change. Unfortunately, management ignored these obligations and advised your representatives that they would not budge on any of these concerns.

Consequently, the combined unions attended Unions NSW as part of the step 3 disputes resolution process with Sydney and NSW Trains separately, which resulted in this matter not being resolved. On Wednesday 2 June, the RTBU and the ASU took the step 3 dispute to the Fair Work Commission. The matter was not resolved and is listed for hearing on 12 July. Following the conciliation, Deputy President Bull made a Determination that the Status Quo provisions of the dispute settlement procedure apply, which means that no changes can be implemented until the matter is resolved. Regular Zoom meetings have been held with members and we will continue to keep members updated as the matter progresses. Now is the time to stick together to fight Transport for NSW’s attempts to destroy jobs and conditions.

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John Holland and UGL In February 2021, Transport for NSW announced that UGL had won the John Holland contract. This transfer process began in May 2021 with UGL and John Holland holding joint roadshows across the network with members at all major sites.

Members from the Junee to Griffth Re Railing project At these meetings, UGL provided their proposed structure that will deliver the maintenance for the new Country Rail Network called UGL Regional Linx. The contract is on a fixed price only for the maintenance delivery model. This impact for just maintenance delivery means a surplus of employees in the current CRN network that could translate to 40% job losses from the current John Holland model. RTBU Officials attended every one of the roadshows providing support to members ad clarifying different scenarios and outcomes. Members will have the opportunity to consider various options, including taking up employment with UGL Regional Linx remaining with John Holland Limited, or taking redundancy. It is proposed that the transfer of business is finalised by 29 January 2022, with the current CRN Enterprise Agreement not expiring until 2023. All employees’ conditions of employment will be maintained and protected following the transfer.

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Members from West Wyalong at the meeting

Members from Bathurst Depot at the meeting

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Industrial Notes Sydney Trains: Driver Trainer Temporary Positions EOI Talent Pool – Notice of Dispute Resolution Members may have seen these positions advertised in February 2021. Sydney Trains put these positions out to employees without consultation with the RTBU Locomotive Division or consideration of possible impacts to working arrangements or conditions of employment. Most concerning was Sydney Trains’ initial view that successful applicants would be temporarily “act in a higher grade” and would receive the Driver Trainer rate of pay as an allowance only. Whilst the Locomotive Division supported the intent of the EOI, the matter was placed into dispute until consultation occurred and a fair and reasonable process was established that was consistent with previous Recruitment/Expressions of Interests and met driver’s conditions of employment. Several consultative meetings occurred, and a suitable outcome was achieved to protect the interests of members. A changed process will now take place to fill the positions. The major achievements for the members are as follows. 1. Payment for the role in all circumstances 2. Positions will fill current shortfalls in current depots only (no transferring depots under this EOI) 3. Stopping the “Higher Duties” concept and adhering to the normal EOI process Sydney Trains have communicated details of the changes and outlined how the process will be worked through. If members need further information, please contact Head Office or Delegates. The RTBU wishes the applicants good luck and appreciates the efforts of the delegates involved in this issue.

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NSW Trains agrees to bargain – Sydney Trains to follow! RTBU members everywhere voted in a Majority Support Determination after both Sydney and NSW Trains refused to start the bargaining process. Thousands of members signed the Majority Support Determination, effectively forcing the NSW and Sydney Trains to agree to bargain, but this, of course, came with conditions, with NSW and Sydney Trains attempting to force members to bargain separately, at different times and in different locations. This is a trick pulled straight from the Union busting handbook, a trick which members did not fall for. The first item in the log of claims, drawn from thousands of responses from members, was that NSW and Sydney Trains should bargain together for one agreement. The scope or who the agreement covered is a threshold issue that, until resolved, makes it very difficult to bargain in a meaningful way. NSW and Sydney Trains members work hand in hand to keep NSW moving, and it makes perfect sense for your conditions to be enshrined in one Enterprise Agreement. The Combined Rail Union put this position to NSW and Sydney Trains in writing, a position which they rejectedwe then invited representatives from NSW and Sydney Trains to attend a meeting of the Combined Rail Union to discuss the claim, an invitation which they refused. Instead, they ploughed ahead, booking separate meetings, RTBU representatives attended these meetings in good faith and once again attempted to raise our firm position that one Enterprise Agreement should cover NSW and Sydney Train employees. Management continued to try and avoid this conversation, Accordingly, with the endorsement of the EA Delegates Team, the RTBU has launched an application for a Protected Action Ballot, which, if successful, will allow members to vote to take action and send a clear message to management that we will insist on bargaining together., P.S You can keep up to date on our campaign at www.ourightsourfight.com.au

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Sydney Trains changes excess shifts for full time Customer Services Attendants without any consultation It has come to the RTBU’s attention that Sydney Trains management have decided to start rostering full-time Customer Service Attendants (CSA) for 4 or 5 hour shifts when offered an excess shift in order to cover parttime shifts. What customarily occurred was when a full-time CSA was offered a part-time shift or any shift less than 8 hours in duration they would be paid for a full shift at 8 hours. This is because of the “Excess Shift Principle” that full-time Operational employees work too.

The Excess Shift Principle means if you are rostered an extra shift on your rostered days off or ADO, this new shift becomes a normal shift. You should then receive overtime penalty payments on the last shift of your fortnightly roster, after you have worked a 9th or 10th shift – depending on which fortnightly rotation you are working. This practice seems to have been changed without any consultation with your union. The issue has been placed into dispute by your local delegates as management are not able

Infrastructure Crib Break Dispute We are currently in the Federal Court seeking backpay for approximately 1000 Infrastructure workers owed payments for meal breaks taken during overtime shifts from October 2014 to May 2018. The RTBU has filed their submissions and are awaiting a reply from Sydney Trains In the meantime, we continue to explore options to resolve the matter.

to make this change absent agreement with the RTBU. As this issue is in dispute, the status quo remains, which means the practice prior to the change remains in effect. In this case its means if you are a full-time CSA and are offered an excess shift on a day off, it needs to be an 8-hour shift minimum. We urge all full-time CSA members when rostering offers you a part-time shift to cover, you should only agree to it if it is a minimum 8 hour shift.

Cleaning Classification Dispute After many months of delay, on 18 March 2021 the Fair Work Commission finally heard the dispute about Station and Turnaround Cleaners who we contend should be classified as Customer Service Attendant 1 (Competent) Cleaning. Station Cleaners do a high volume of customer service work, although they get paid the same amount as other Cleaners who work in yards and maintenance centres. Several Station and Turnaround Cleaners gave evidence about how important their work was to the wellbeing of customers and their colleagues during breakdowns and delays. Deputy President Bull has handed down his decision and it was not in our favour so we are considering our options to appeal.

Voestalpine Members vote for Industrial Action The membership and representatives from the RTBU and the AMWU at Voestalpine in Bathurst have been negotiating their Enterprise Agreement from 1 October 2020 through to December 2020 with very little response from the company. After several meetings with Voestalpine, the membership endorsed the filing of an application for a protected action ballot order which is the right of all workers to withdraw their labour and is a fundamental element of collective bargaining and one of the essential means available to employees to protect their conditions and secure a pay increase. The membership is congratulated for the ballot resulting in favour of the commencement of industrial action, and as such, the membership implemented overtime bans and stop work meetings.

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The company responded by pushing out an agreement that the membership did not endorse, and therefore, a substantial number of members voted no to this agreement. The RTBU and AMWU approached the company to facilitate further negotiations, but this had not resulted in any movement and simply fell on deaf ears. Due to this, the membership had endorsed the RTBU and AMWU to lodge notifications for ongoing industrial action, which included overtime bans and stop work meetings. Due to this demonstration of strength and unity the company came back to the membership and made a further offer of a 2% pay increase and a two-year agreement. This proposed agreement was put to the vote where the majority of the employees accepted the offer.

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General News Vale Bob Plain (Plainy), 1945-2021 It is with sadness that we wish to advise members on the passing of Bob Plain in May, or ‘Plainy’ to those who knew him. Bob played a significant role in the AFULE, PTU and RTBU before retiring in 2002. He was the last AFULE President and very first PTU (RTBU) Locomotive Divisional Secretary and NSW Branch President. Bob Plain has become a name associated with the Rail Tram and Bus Union and tough negotiations and leadership of his beloved Locomotive Division. Bob retired from his State and National Union positions at the end of 2002. At the age of 57, and after a number of health-related problems Bob decided it was time to step down, spend some more time with his wife Robyn and family. The reins were handed to his deputy, Robert Hayden. While Bob Plain will be written into trade union history as a strong and effective union leader making a number of significant and lasting contributions to the rail industry, he insists he never had any ambitions to be a union leader. Bob started his career on the railway in 1960 at Eveleigh as a Call Boy and managed to get in trouble in his first day on the job. The day before he turned up for work was a Bank Holiday and he’d been told that he would start after the public holiday, only to be told in no uncertain terms that he was meant to be there a day earlier. He moved to Enfield in 1961 as a trainee engineman (and joined the Union – Australian Federated Union of Locomotive Enginemen – the AFULE), then worked as an acting fireman, becoming a fireman in 1964. While he was happy working on the railway, he had always dreamed of becoming a train driver since childhood. His dream was realised at Flemington in 1974 when he became an electric train driver until 1979, then returning to Enfield as a freight train driver. The Unionist Bob’s Union career started in about 1982, when he met Michael Costa and Noel Cox. He started going to meetings to plan an election campaign for the Union elections. They were contesting on a ticket opposing the incumbent team under Bernie Willingale. In those days, Bob says that it was almost unheard of for an AFULE official to be defeated at an election – you were usually considered a member for life. In 1986 Bob was successful at the union branch elections and was elected Senior Vice-President of the NSW Branch

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of the AFULE (as he modestly put it – ‘he was only there to make up the numbers’). Michael Costa was elected as Branch President. In 1989 Bob was defeated in the union elections (by 68 votes to Bill Stannard) By this time, Costa left to take up a position in Labor Council (where he later became Labor Council Secretary). Bob returned to Enfield and resumed as a Driver Trainer. In 1991 Bill Stannard took medical retirement and a new election was called for his position. Bob by this time had been “bitten by the political/union bug” and realised that he could achieve things for the members in the Union. Bob was re-elected as Branch President (winning against Laurie Cook). In 1993 the AFULE amalgamated with other rail unions to form the Rail Tram and Bus Union. Bob became Locomotive Divisional Secretary and Branch President in the amalgamated union in 1995. In interviews for On Wooden Rails in 2002, Bob recalled

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the times prior to amalgamation as times of conflict, divisiveness and poor achievements in wages growth. Much of this was due to the Without Brake Van (WB) days and the 50/50 shared functions between guards and firemen. A time and practice that he describes as “a scar on the railway, of bitter rivalry and lack of teamwork”. One of Bob’s proudest achievements was his instrumental role of ridding the railway of this practice through a Memorandum of Understanding that he drew up and brokered with other rail unions. The document became part of the 1992 work value case where drivers gained a $34 wage increase. It also provided a new career structure, removing previous barriers to guards being able to progress to drivers’ positions. Bob was rightly proud of the gains made for members under his stewardship. Since 1992, drivers’ wages have increased by approximately 75%. By the year of his retirement the rates of pay for drivers

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at SRA, FreightCorp and National Rail were within $8 per year of each other. In the 2000 Olympic agreement ETR got the 19-day month on normal shifts and no increase in kilometres. These are just a few of Bob Plain’s many achievements during his time in the Union. He will always be remembered as a tough opponent by management, and a caring and passionate leader by his members. The railways are a better place for his contributions, principles, expertise and compassion. Respected by Friends and Foes Alike The true testament to the high regard in which Bob Plain is held was clearly demonstrated at a farewell function at Riverwood on December 6, 2002. The audience was a diverse mix of union members, officials from other unions, management from all the major rail bodies, the Premier Mr Bob Carr and his wife, the Minister for Transport, Mr Carl Scully, and the Minister for Police, Mr Michael Costa and his

partner, and his friends and family members. Very few contemporary union officials could attract the genuine respect and affection across the political and union spectrum that was expressed towards Bob Plain. All speakers agreed that Bob Plain was not only a remarkable union leader, but a genuinely ‘good bloke’. After 42 years in the job, he will long be remembered in the rail industry, the union movement, and the wider community as both a strong leader and a great bloke. He was a mentor to many and respected by those who knew and worked with him. Our condolences to Bob’s wife Robyn, children Darren, Jason, Michelle and Leonie, grandchildren Mitchell. Jacob, Isabelle, Cory, Harry, Cordelia, Ashleigh, Jake, Sarah and Benjamin and great grandson Brock at their time of loss. RIP “Plainy”. You will be sadly missed.

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SYDNEY TRAINS CUSTOMER SERVICE DIRECTORATE DECLARES ‘COVID-19’ IS OVER! In April, Sydney Trains management at their peak COVID-19 meeting announced they would proceed with their planned removal of the Liverpool Railway Station Garrison (GAC). This is despite a promise that the GAC would remain until the end of COVID-19. We can only assume that the Sydney Trains Customer Service Directorate has declared that the COVID-19 pandemic has finished. The RTBU was gob smacked by this announcement from management as not only was it ironic that this change was announced at a briefing on how Sydney Trains was dealing with

COVID briefings, but the COVID-19 pandemic is still well and truly with us. The Fair Work Commission handed down a disastrous decision last year which failed working people and gave Sydney Trains the green light to remove the Garrison at Liverpool Station. However, management gave a commitment to the RTBU that the Garrison will not be removed until COVID-19 had ended. Sydney Trains committed to this because it recognised the important role the Garrison played in protecting the health of frontline employees during a pandemic. Without physical

barriers like the Garrison, employees would have been more exposed and at risk to contracting COVID-19. Agreements like this saved lives and protected employees from the harmful virus and was part of the co-operative approach adopted by all during the crisis. For management to remove the Garrison shows their complete disregard for the safety of frontline employees. By removing the Garrison, employee’s health and safety will be increasingly at risk as patronage continues to grow.

GET YOUR UNION NEWS Need to keep up-to-date with what’s happening in your union, need to know more about how fellow members are fighting for workers’ rights and winning battles on a daily basis make sure you grab your next edition of Rail and Road, or check out the rtbuexpress.com.au

Infrastructure members at ARTC Maitland keeping up to date with the Rail and Road.

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Workers stop the bus! Scott Morrison’s so- called Industrial Relations Omnibus bill has fallen apart, after five of the six elements of the bill were rejected by the Senate. The only section of the bill to pass relates to casuals. It inserts a statutory definition of ‘casual employee’ into the FW Act and allows Courts to offset casual loading paid against any amount being claimed by an employee when they have permanent entitlements. It also includes a casual conversion entitlement in the National Employment Standards. RTBU members were at the forefront of efforts to

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convince Senators to reject the Omnibus bill. The union also contributed to the high-profile ‘Stop the Bus’ campaign, which saw a series of hard-hitting advertisements screened on commercial TV and across social media platforms. National Secretary Mark Diamond said the Omnibus bill was a blatant attack on the rights of working Australians. “The Omnibus bill would have made it even harder for Australian workers to negotiate fair pay and conditions. “Everyone who participated in this campaign should be proud. We stood up for our rights, and we won. We stopped the bus.”

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Bardo steps off the footplate after a lifetime of advocacy After 40 years as a unionist, Allan ‘Bardo’ Barden is hanging up his boots and moving on to the next chapter of his life. He leaves huge shoes to fill: • the youngest (and last) national General Secretary of the AFULE; • ten years RTBU Assistant National Secretary (Locomotive); • seven years as Assistant NSW Locomotive Division Secretary; • three years as National Secretary; and • another eight years as Assistant National Secretary. Allan has seen the union through amalgamations, privatisations, and bitter disputes. Through it all, he’s built a reputation as steadying hand who ensures the union always stays true to its values, and true to its central mission of improving the lives of its members. The Holiday Job that Turned Into a Career It could have been a very different life – as the young ‘Bardo’ was actually planning for life as a bookkeeper. “It was way back in the end of ‘77,

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beginning of ‘78, and I was doing an accountancy course in TAFE,” Allan said. “A few of my friends were in the railway industry at that time, and the TAFE closed for Christmas break, and my mates were saying just jump on the railways for a short time and get some money. “So I went to the railways employment office at and I said, “have you got anything of a station assistant or anything like that?’ “They said, ‘No, not really, but we’ve got one for a trainee engineman.’ “I thought to myself, ‘What in the hell is an engineman?’. But then I said, ‘I’ll give it a go, put me in for it.’ “So it was by pure accident, but once I got up on to the footplate, I loved it, so that sort of cemented my career choice to become a driver.” Bardo Versus Nifty The incident that set Allan on track to become full-time union official, however occurred back in the 1980s, when he was driving suburban passenger trains and representing his colleagues as a

Workplace Delegate. “I was going through the Sydney underground and I was noticing some of these people coming out of the underground - like track workers, but they weren’t track workers,” Allan said. “They were dressed in these overalls, and they had helmets on like a spaceman! They’d go to a bin just outside the Sydney underground and dispose of everything that they were wearing, and then they’d walk away. “I needed to find out what was going on there, and eventually I discovered they were testing for asbestos. “So I challenged management about it. They said, ‘No, that’s just general cleaning duties and no one needs to worry about it’, which made me even more concerned. “I talked to the executives in the union, and they were supportive of what I was doing, and we found out that through contacts that the asbestos was actually in the mortar between the bricks. “Eventually management finally admitted that the entire

RAIL & ROAD June 2021


underground was built using asbestos mortar, but they insisted that it was sealed and all okay. We said, ‘Well, if it’s all okay, why are these guys coming out in spacesuits?’ “They couldn’t really answer that, so we said, ‘You’ve got 48 hours to do something about it, or we’re going to stop the trains going into the underground to protect the health and safety of our members and the traveling public’.” The issue completely blew up in the media, and it became a political crisis for the NSW Premier, the late Neville ‘Nifty’ Wran. “Neville Wran was having a bit of holiday at the time, so he rushed back to Sydney,“ Allan said. “He would have got there about 10 o’clock, with just two hours left before we were to commence the shutdown. “They agreed to vacuum out the entire underground and then seal off all the brick work along the entire underground network. And they would do that during the night - every night. They would start commencing the seal off straight away. “It was about 10 minutes to midnight when the deal was struck.” The threat to stop driving trains through the underground forced the NSW Government to address a

Allan addresses the 2017 National Council dangerous safety issue. It was also a transformative one for the young train driver who first blew the whistle on the asbestos risk. “I thought, “We can do things, and we can get the government to do things. We can use our resources to get deals done.” THE POWER OF UNION Through his long career as a train driver and trade unionist, Allan’s commitment and enthusiasm for the cause has never waned. Now he’s keen to encourage a new generation of rail and public transport workers to stand up for the rights.

“I urge everyone who joins the rail, tram, and bus industries to become a member of the union, because the union is not an outside entity,” Allan said. “It is you, me, all of us - working together for a common purpose. “Whether that’s standing up for a workmate who’s being treated poorly, negotiating for better wages and conditions fighting government policies through community protests, or even banding together to put a new government in power – we can do all of that when we’re united as one.”

Les Moffit (Qld), Allan, Noel Morris (Qld) and Helen Alesana (AusSuper)

RAIL & ROAD June 2021

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Bob Hayden Steps Down as Divisional Secretary Locomotive Divisional Secretary, Bob Hayden has announced that he is stepping down after many years of dedicated service to the RTBU and Locomotive members. The following is an edited extract from a Statement to members issued by Bob, announcing his resignation, and the appointment of Farren Campbell as the new Divisional Secretary. A Message from Robert Hayden I am writing to let Delegates and Members know about my decision to step down as Locomotive Division Secretary effective from Wednesday 9 June 2021. The NSW Branch Executive, following a unanimous recommendation from Divisional Council, has appointed Divisional President Farren Campbell to fill the role of Secretary until the declaration of the RTBU National Elections in 2022. I did not make this decision lightly, but I have made it knowing that a dynamic new group of leaders are ready to step up, take on, and tackle the challenges we face for as long as the membership determines. Importantly, these leaders can take this next step without creating instability within the Division. Instability is a weakness that, if seen, will be used by employers and others to destabilise the union. Our focus must remain on the collective and taking on employers and governments of all persuasions who fail to lead for all. We can only do this as a stable and united Division. While announcing my decision to resign from my Secretary position, I advised Divisional Council that I will always be prepared to support and assist the Division should it be asked and or determined by the Executive and Divisional Council. It has been an honour to hold senior elected positions in the RTBU and Locomotive Divisions for close to 28 years, including a short period as National Secretary and 17 years as Divisional Secretary of the Locomotive Division. The role of Locomotive Division Secretary has evolved over the years, with the “industrial” portion of the job being overtaken by “internal, political, governance, finance, people (HR) and non-industrial” work. I am happy to see this issue was identified and addressed in the recently conducted review of the Division. While I believe, I have done the best I could in juggling and managing all the functions and responsibilities of the Divisional Secretary, it’s best I let others make the judgment. I did what I did when I could and tried to lead inclusively while building consensus. I have always been prepared to accept the decision of Members, Divisional Council and Executive who at the end of the day the Secretary works for. Unions and working people will continue to face difficult and challenging times. The ideology of the individual above the collective will challenge Unions and other collective organisations that work to create a better world. Only with a united and committed leadership will the Division grow,

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Newly appointed Divisional Secretary, Farren Campbell (left) with Robert Hayden survive, and continue to be a “never give up” force. Our Division has continued to grow from strength to strength, now being in a financial position to employ our first-ever dedicated legal and industrial officers. We are committed to having the resources needed to represent members in the current climate. The Divisional Councils’ unanimous decision to conduct a review and implement its recommendations gives the Divisions’ next generation of leaders the structure, tools, and authority to lead and represent the interest of the current and next generation of members and their union at a time of rapid change within the rail industry, technology, and political environment. Our ability to organise, represent and grow the Division in the best interest of members as part of the broader RTBU and Union Movement must be our only focus. No one individual is more significant or more important than the collective. I believe we need generational change from the top down to meet the ever-natural demographic, technological, and societal changes we face. It is with this in mind that I have made this decision. It has been a privilege to lead the Locomotive Division. In Continued Solidarity, Bob Hayden The RTBU would like to take this opportunity to thank Bob for his many contributions to building and strengthening our union over many years, and wish him all the best in the next chapter of his life.

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Area Controllers’ Celebrate 100 years at Lithgow Coal Stage Signal Box

On 7 April 2021, Area Controllers, in conjunction with the RTBU and Sydney Trains, celebrated Lithgow Coal Stage Signal Box’s 100th anniversary. Sydney Trains hosted a celebratory afternoon tea with Area Controllers issued plaques as recognition, it is further noted that between all the Area Controllers at Coal Stage there is 197 years of service. The New South Wales Government Railways built Lithgow Coal Stage Box to cater for expanded marshaling yards and the loco depot, which was the replacement for the original Eskbank loco depot. Coal Stage takes its name from the 1888 online overhead coaling bunker (now demolished) and controlled access to and from the loco depot, local colliery branch lines in addition to locos using the 1888 online overhead. With the 1957 electrification of Lithgow Yard Coal Side, the signaling system was adapted to include electric light signaling. There was a poignancy to these celebrations as Coal Side is scheduled to be decommissioned due to Area Controllers moving to the Rail Operations Centre (ROC). The decommissioning will be the end of an era and met with great sadness for the Area Controllers past and present. However, Coal Stage is listed on the State Heritage Register, so there will be no risk of demolishing this piece of history.

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Summary of Financial Reports Summary of Financial Reports AUSTRALIAN RAIL, TRAM AND BUS INDUSTRY UNION, NEW SOUTH WALES BRANCH This summary of Financial Reports for the NSW Branch have been extracted from the audited NSW Branch General Purpose Financial Report for 2020, prepared for the Fair Work Commission in compliance with reporting requirements of the Fair Work Act and Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Act 2009. The full Financial Reports (including explanatory notes) are available on rtbueexpress.com.au STATEMENT OF COMPREHENSIVE INCOME For the Year Ended 31st December 2020 2020 $ REVENUE FROM CONTRACTS WITH CUSTOMERS Members Contributions Legal Levy Received Capitation Fees and other revenue from another reporting entity TOTAL REVENUE FROM CONTRACTS WITH CUSTOMERS

2019 $

7,672,107 465,213 -

7,364,432 504,990 -

8,137,320

7,869,422

319,075 320,622 12,290 100,000 77,468 829,455

224,020 330,264 1,500,000 37,599 2,091,883

TOTAL INCOME

8,966,775

9,961,305

EXPENSES Employee Expenses Capitation Fee paid to National Office Other Expenses to another Reporting Unit Affiliation Fees Administration Expenses Grants or Donations Depreciation and Amortisation Legal Costs Audit and Accounting Fees Other Expenses

3,242,996 955,511 231,063 865,996 3,818 94,389 252,843 46,886 1,392,465

3,215,821 912,525 254,717 987,715 22,283 87,486 475,037 42,844 1,374,185

TOTAL EXPENSES

7,085,967

7,372,613

SURPLUS FOR THE YEAR

1,880,808

2,588,692

OTHER COMPREHENSIVE INCOME Items that will not be subsequently reclassified to profit or loss Gain on revaluation of land and building TOTAL COMPREHENSIVE INCOME FOR THE YEAR

1,880,808

279,375 2,868,067

OTHER INCOME Interest Received Rent Received Grants and/or Donations Valuation Gain from Investment Property Revenue from Recovery of Wages Activity Net Gains from Sale of Assets Cashflow Boost Income Other Income TOTAL OTHER INCOME

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Page 1 of 5

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AUSTRALIAN RAIL, TRAM AND BUS INDUSTRY UNION, NEW SOUTH WALES BRANCH STATEMENT OF CHANGES MEMBER’S EQUITY As at 31st December 2020 Accumulated Surpluses Balance as at 1 January 2019 Surplus for the Year Other Comprehensive Income for the Year Total Comprehensive Income for the Year Balance as at 31 December 2019 Surplus for the Year

Asset Revaluation $

Balance as at 31 December 2020

RAIL & ROAD June 2021

$

22,884,151

342,500

23,226,651

2,588,692

-

2,588,692

-

279,375

279,375

2,588,692

279,375

2,868,067

25,472,843

621,875

26,094,718

1,880,808

-

1,880,808

-

-

1,880,808

-

1,880,808

27,353,651

621,875

27,975,526

Other Comprehensive Income for the Year Total Comprehensive Income for the Year

Total

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AUSTRALIAN RAIL, TRAM AND BUS INDUSTRY UNION, NEW SOUTH WALES BRANCH STATEMENT OF FINANCIAL POSITION As at 31st December 2020 2020 $

2019 $

CURRENT ASSETS Cash and Cash Equivalents Receivables Other Financial Assets

10,342,965 165,553 80,068 10,012,715

8,244,009 228,258 118,556 9,735,264

TOTAL CURRENT ASSETS

20,601,301

18,326,087

NON-CURRENT ASSETS Receivable Financial Assets Property Investment Property Plant & Equipment Motor Vehicles

1,003,546 1,236 998,400 7,660,039 94,612 159,383

979,046 1,236 1,024,000 7,666,432 84,927 116,083

TOTAL NON-CURRENT ASSETS

9,917,216

9,871,724

30,518,517

28,197,811

CURRENT LIABILITIES Accounts Payable Provisions

758,532 1,784,459

551,862 1,551,231

TOTAL CURRENT LIABILITIES

2,542,991

2,103,093

TOTAL LIABILITIES

2,542,991

2,103,093

NET ASSETS

27,975,526

26,094,718

ACCUMULATED FUNDS Reserves Accumulated Surpluses

621,875 27,353,651

621,875 25,472,843

ACCUMULATED FUNDS

27,975,526

26,094,718

TOTAL ASSETS

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AUSTRALIAN RAIL, TRAM AND BUS INDUSTRY UNION, NEW SOUTH WALES BRANCH STATEMENT OF CASH FLOWS For the Year Ended 31st December 2020

2020 $ Receipt from RTBU National Office Receipts from Members Payment to RTBU National Office Payments to Suppliers and Employees Interest Received Rent Received Cashflow Boost Income Receipts - Other

2019 $

58,298 8,984,093 (757,337) (6,578,185) 319,075 305,688 100,000 47,865

2,586 8,573,085 (1,066,025) (6,353,845) 223,845 363,290 38,259

Net Cash Provided by Operating Activities

2,479,498

1,781,196

CASH FLOW FROM INVESTING ACTIVITIES Purchase of plant and equipment Receipt from disposal of assets Investment in term deposit

(155,818) 52,727 (277,451)

(56,847) (147,939)

Net Cash (Used in) Investing Activities

(380,542)

(204,786)

Net Increase in Cash Held Cash at beginning of the Year

2,098,956 8,244,009

1,576,410 6,667,599

10,342,965

8,244,009

10,342,965

8,244,009

Cash at the End of Year NOTES TO THE STATEMENT OF CASH FLOW Note A - Reconciliation of Cash Cash at the end of the financial year as show in the Statement of Cash Flows is reconciled to the related items in the Statement of Financial Position as follows: Cash on hand and at Bank

RAIL & ROAD June 2021

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AUSTRALIAN RAIL, TRAM AND BUS INDUSTRY UNION, NEW SOUTH WALES BRANCH STATEMENT OF CASH FLOWS For the Year Ended 31st December 2020

2020 $

2019 $

Note B – Reconciliation of Cash Flow from Operations with Profit from Ordinary Activities Profit from Ordinary Activities Depreciation Gain from Sale of Asset Valuation Gain from Investment Property Change in Assets and Liabilities Decrease / (Increase) in Receivables Decrease in Prepaid Expenses Increase in Creditors Increase/(Decrease) in Provision for employee benefits Cash Flows from Operations

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1,880,808

2,588,692

94,389 (12,290) -

87,486 (1,500,000)

38,205 38,488 206,670

(73,947) 38,115 45,477

233,228

595,373

2,479,498

1,781,196

RAIL & ROAD June 2021


Summary Reports Summaryof of Financial Financial Reports RAIL, TRAM AND BUS UNION OF NEW SOUTH WALES

This summary of State Financial Reports have been extracted from the audited State Financial Statements for 2020, prepared in compliance with reporting requirements of the NSW Industrial Relations Act 1996. The full Financial Reports (including explanatory notes) are available on rtbuexpress.com.au STATEMENT OF COMPREHENSIVE INCOME For the Year Ended 31st December 2020 2020

2019

$

$

Rent – Caravans

127,809

135,964

Rent – Units

128,907

183,276

5

41

256,721

319,281

Administration Expenses

296,638

276,678

Depreciation Expenses

204,902

170,184

3,390

20,303

504,930

467,166

(248,209)

(147,885)

-

1,950,000

(248,209)

1,802,115

INCOME

Interest Received TOTAL INCOME EXPENSES

Other Expenses TOTAL EXPENSES NET DEFICIT FOR THE YEAR

OTHER COMPREHENSIVE INCOME Gain on Revaluation of Land & Buildings TOTAL COMPREHENSIVE INCOME/ (LOSS) FOR THE YEAR

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Page 23 Page 1 of 4


RAIL, TRAM AND BUS UNION OF NEW SOUTH WALES STATEMENT OF CHANGES IN MEMBER’S EQUITY As at 31st December 2020

Accumulated

Asset

Surpluses

Revaluation

Total

$

$

Balance as at 01 January 2019

2,188,439

3,695,854

5,884,293

Net Deficit for the Year

(147,885)

-

(147,885)

-

1,950,000

1,950,000

Total Comprehensive Income for the Year

(147,885)

1,950,000

1,802,115

Balance as at 31 December 2019

2,040,554

5,645,854

7,686,408

Net Deficit for the Year

(248,209)

-

(248,209)

-

-

-

Total Comprehensive Income for the Year

(248,209)

-

(248,209)

Balance as at 31 December 2020

1,792,345

5,645,854

7,438,199

Other Comprehensive Income for the Year

Other Comprehensive Income for the Year

Page 24

RAIL & ROAD June 2021


RAIL, TRAM AND BUS UNION OF NEW SOUTH WALES STATEMENT OF FINANCIAL POSITION As at 31st December 2020 2020

2019

$

$

CURRENT ASSETS Cash and Cash Equivalents Receivables

57,198 7,755

59,469 6,171

TOTAL CURRENT ASSETS

64,953

65,640

NON-CURRENT ASSETS Investment Property – Jervis Bay Property, Plant & Equipment

1,000,000 7,402,393

1,000,000 7,603,920

TOTAL NON-CURRENT ASSETS

8,402,393

8,603,920

TOTAL ASSETS

8,467,346

8,669,560

CURRENT LIABILITIES Payables

25,601

4,106

TOTAL CURRENT LIABILITIES

25,601

4,106

NON-CURRENT LIABILITIES Payables

1,003,546

979,046

TOTAL NON-CURRENT LIABILITIES

1,003,546

979,046

TOTAL LIABILITIES

1,029,147

983,152

NET ASSETS

7,438,199

7,686,408

ACCUMULATED FUNDS Reserves Accumulated Surpluses

5,645,854 1,792,345

5,645,854 2,040,554

ACCUMULATED FUNDS

7,438,199

7,686,408

RAIL & ROAD June 2021

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RAIL, TRAM AND BUS UNION OF NEW SOUTH WALES STATEMENT OF CASH FLOWS For the Year Ended 31st December 2020

2020

2019

280,804 5 24,500 (304,205)

351,693 41 (314,282)

1,104

37,452

(3,375)

(22,280)

(3,375)

(22,280)

Net Increase / (Decrease) in Cash Held Cash at beginning of the Year

(2,271) 59,469

15,172 44,297

Cash at the End of Year

57,198

59,469

CASH FLOW FROM OPERATING ACTIVITIES Rent Received Interest Received Receipt from RTBU – NSW Branch Payments to Suppliers and Employees Net Cash Provided by Operating Activities CASH FLOW FROM INVESTING ACTIVITIES Payment for Assets Net Cash Provided Used in Investing Activities

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RAIL & ROAD June 2021


Holiday at the RTBU Jervis Bay Holiday Park

Treat your family to a relaxing holiday, enjoying the pristine waterways, flora and fauna, and tranquility of the Booderee National Park. All RTBU members (as well as HSU and USU members) pay a discounted member rate. Nonmembers are able to book at the RTBU Holiday Park at a higher rate. Information is available on our facebook page RTBU Holiday Park Jervis Bay, and all bookings are to be made through the union office. Bookings are restricted on the basis of one unit per member (during summer holidays,.....for a minimum of one week and a maximum of two weeks from Saturday to Saturday). Proof of membership will be required upon arrival. For more information about the Holiday Park or any questions, please call the RTBU office on (02) 9264 2511 or email nswho@rtbu-nsw.asn.au.

RAIL & ROAD June 2021

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RTBU HOLIDAY PARK - CHRISTMAS BALLOT NOMINATION FORM (Saturday, 18th December 2021 – Saturday, 29th January 2022) Ballot Closes at midday, Friday, 24th September 2021 NAME: ___________________________________________________________________ ADDRESS: _________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________ MOBILE NUMBER: _______________________ MEMBERSHIP NUMBER _____________ EMAIL: _________________________________________________________________________ DATE REQUESTED: (in order of preference) _________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________ _________________________________________________________________________ NUMBER OF ADULTS IN CABIN: ______________________________________________ NUMBER OF CHILDREN IN CABIN (under 18): ___________________________________ Please Note: Booking for Christmas holidays are minimum 1 week to a maximum of 2 weeks. (Check In: Saturday, 2pm and Check Out: Saturday, 10am) Email: nswho@rtbu-nsw.asn.au Mailing Address: RTBU, Level 4, 321 Pitt Street, Sydney, NSW 2000 Page 28

RAIL & ROAD June 2021


On the Campaign Trail Community Continues to Protest Bus Privatisation

The issue of the NSW Government’s bus privatisation has continued to receive massive attention in the media, and broad community support, particularly due to the link to COVID-19 and our push to have passengers wear masks where there are not enough green dots to physically distance. We used this opportunity to also leverage commitments around protecting industrial entitlements in any transition to private operations and a commitment to community consultation about any moves to remove routes or stops.

RAIL & ROAD June 2021

The Union’s focus is now on keeping the government to their commitment of having only 1 employer. This is the root of all the problems our members in Region 6 have been suffering. It gives us a chance to fight back if the company tries to introduce another industrial instrument (and create a two-tiered employment situation like in region 6). When there is more than one company involved, region 6 has shown everyone what to expect. Once we know who has won a region, we will be sitting down to negotiate an Enterprise Agreement. The starting point for this negotiation will be the

new STA Award and we have been telling companies for the last few months that if they want things to go smoothly for them, no major changes will be made at all. We will continue to work with the Our Transport community, in impacted regions to ensure this consultation is genuine and robust. The NSW Government continues to take an axe to our bus network as the privatisation continues, with major changes in Region 7 that came into effect on January 24. Ryde Mayor Jeremy Laxale called for an urgent halt to the changes, with a petition

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local residents and drivers who have campaigned tirelessly to save their transport services. To add insult to injury, the Government’s announcement came with an invitation for community feedback - the first time this has been asked for since the privatisation of the network was announced. The Government’s blatant disregard for the community, including its own constituents, baffles belief. But the community won this consultation, and now it’s time to hammer the message home. Working with members, the Our Transport Community, community groups, and local Members of Parliament on May 30, hundreds of people attended a rally in Randwick. The community is committed to participating in the NSW Governments flawed consultation process. It will continue to call out the NSW Government as they attempt to strip the routes and stops across the network that the community so clearly relies on.

against the new schedule amassing 600 signatures. Finally, as COVID continues to reappear, we got a commitment from the NSW Government on the mandatory wearing of face mask on public transport. Even as restrictions eased in other areas, this requirement remained in place, providing some protection for transport workers and passengers. Our Community Survey Minister Constance committed verbally to consulting with the community about any changes to routes and stops in Regions 7, 8 and 9. When this commitment was reneged on, we launched a survey through the Our Transport community seeking feedback about what routes and

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stops mattered the most to them. We received nearly 2,000 responses with 92% saying they had not been consulted on changes to routes and stops. The results of this survey were launched in a report on March 11 with series of recommendations about how TfNSW should consult with communities impacted by privatisation. This report and recommendations have been sent to Minister Constance and we will engage the Our Transport community in an online action to send the report directly to the Minister and continue to highlight the issue in the media. Keep our Buses Public On May 3, Transport Minister Andrew Constance announced the axing of 25 bus routes in the Eastern suburbs, in yet another betrayal of

RAIL & ROAD June 2021


New Intercity Fleet Campaign Our campaign for safety on the New Intercity Fleet has continued with NSW Trains and the NSW Government getting increasingly desperate to force the NIF into revenue service. Despite the action of members, a win in the Fair Work Commission, and an independent safety report that clearly states the operating model is not safe, it seems the NSW Government will stop at nothing in trying to force members to crew an unsafe train., Constance has got to be joking On April 1, Transport Minister Andrew Constance told the media the New InterCity Fleet would be in revenue services “in a few weeks.” It must have been an April Fool’s Joke as the NSW Premier and Transport Minister is well aware that no roll-out of the New Intercity Fleet is possible until all safety concerns are resolved with the rail workforce. The Transport Minister then escalated, threatening members at a meeting with Senior RTBU Officials. He told us that he would force Driver Only Operations across BOTH the Sydney and NSW Trains network unless we accepted the New Intercity Fleet into revenue service. He asked us to pass this threat on to members, which we did. Members were understandably shocked that the Government would stoop to this level.

We will not be blackmailed In late April, NSW Trains attempted to blackmail Guards and Drivers and force the NIF into revenue service. They offered a pay increase of 4% to drivers and a sign-on bonus of $2500 for both Guards and Drivers. NSW Trains made this financial offer without taking any steps to address the numerous safety concerns raised by Delegates, HSRs, and the Independent Safety Report. Delegates unanimously rejected this offer, making it very clear to NSW Trains and the NSW Government that safety is always our number one priority. NSW Trains on Tour Following this rejection, management from NSW Trains attempted a Depot Tour trying to convince members that their preferred operating model is safe. The anger from members was palpable as NSW Train Senior Managers tried to convince them to ignore the independent safety report and take their word their proposed model was safe.

RTBU members stood firm and told management precisely what they thought of their games. Legal Action Against Workers Following managements’ failed Depot tour, NSW Trains decided to employ another tactic. At 5.25 pm on May 7 (in the legal world, they call this a five o’clock special), the RTBU received notification that NSW Trains and Transport for NSW are suing their own workers in a desperate attempt to force the unsafe NIF into revenue service. In an unnecessary act of aggression, NSW Trains and the NSW Government are coming after their workforce, who are rightly standing up for safety. They are saying if we refuse to put the community at risk and not crew the NIF on safety grounds, we are taking unlawful industrial action. We will, of course, fight this act of aggression like we have in every step of this campaign by standing together and standing up for safety.

TRAM & BUS EXPRESS

Get on the TRAM & BUS EXPRESS Tram and Bus Express is constantly updated with new information from around the depots – including workplace disputes, industry updates and news about RTBU Members. Members who subscribe to the web site get a fortnightly email with links to all the latest scoops. Printed newsletters will also be distributed around depots.

tramandbusexpress.com.au RAIL & ROAD June 2021

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Join the RTBU Retired Members Association Many retired members continue to receive copies of the journal Rail & Road, and take an interest in the life of the union. Many have also said that they would like to maintain a closer connection and involvement with the work of the union. The RTBU Retired Members Association was established to provide a forum for former members to meet, work on campaigns, address issues of particular relevance for retirees and to identify ways of assisting, supporting and contributing to the work of the union. It is expected that the Retired Members Association will function independently and pursue issues that it identifies as priorities. If you are a retired member of our union, we would like you to consider joining the Retired Members Association. Membership forms are available from the RTBU Head Office, Level 4, 321 Pitt Street, Sydney or on the union website: www.rtbu-nsw.asn.au

For more information, contact Peter O’Connor the union office859 on 607 (02) 9264 2511 For more information, contact ChrisatDoyle on 0438

or the union office on (02) 9264 2511

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raIL & rOaD June 2010

www.locoexpress.com.au Page 32

RAIL & ROAD June 2021


Whistlestop Engineman Hits 100 Not Out Frederich Phillip Victor Abel, engineman of Kempsey Locomotive Depot, which was a sub-depot of Taree, recently reached the milestone of 100 years young on 23 April 2021. I don’t think too many of our members get to reach this milestone. Fred Abel joined the then NSW Railways as a casual cleaner on 7th October 1940 at Junee, and for some reason he was ‘dispensed’ on 30th December 1940. He was once again employed as a casual cleaner 5 days later on 5th January 1941, only to be ‘dispensed’ again on 19th April 1941, and re-employed 10 days later on 28th April 1941, and appointed Cleaner on 5th July 1942. He was appointed as Fireman on 8th August 1944 at Junee, and appointed as Driver at Junee on 1st September 1950. Fred transferred to Kempsey Locomotive Depot and took up duties on 24th June 1954. He remained a Driver at Kempsey until his retirement on 12th July 1981. Fred was from a railway family, born at Werris Creek on 23rd April 1921, where his father, Friditch Hyndritch Abel was employed as a Fireman. The Abel dynasty have a

long history of employment in the NSW Railways, totalling hundreds of years in all. Family member were employed as Drivers, Firemen, Signalmen, and Fettlers, to name a few. Fred’s family originated in Germany, but the original spelling used to be Ebel, and was changed to Abel some hundreds of years ago. Fred’s forefathers came from England in the 1800s. Fred married Millie Elizabeth Dean on 26th July 1941, and they were delighted with five children, three boys and two girls. Unfortunately,

one girl passed away at a very early age. Fred has nine grandchildren, and twenty three great grandchildren, and five great great grandchildren. Employed at Junee Locomotive Depot as a Fireman and Driver, Fred would be one of the last Enginemen to be qualified for the 57 Class locomotives. In 1929, the 57 Class locomotives emerged as the biggest and most powerful steam locomotives Australia has ever seen. Its ability to haul up to 2000 tonnes of freight effortlessly over steep terrain, earned it the nickname ‘Lazy Lizzy’. This class of locomotive was in service for 32 years. Fred Abel was also qualified as Fireman and Driver on the 38 Class locomotives. At the time of Fred’s retirement, Mr A Shaw, Personnel Manager of State Rail Regional North, wrote “I would like to take this opportunity of thanking you for your services to the Authority, and wish you a long and happy retirement”. Fred has taken the advice, and we wish him well in reaching his 100 year milestone. (Supplied by Barry Seghers and Garry Zimmerman) Photos supplied (Fred and 57 Class)

RAIL & ROAD June 2021

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Werris Creek Train Driver Finally Steps off the Footplate Local newspapers in February 2020 (and reproduced in Rail and Road, March 2020) reported how the then 80 year old train driver, Peter Sawtell, had clocked up 65 years of railway service and said he had no plans to retire any time soon. In April this year, Peter finally stepped down from the footplate. Mr Sawtell was a few months shy of 16 when he moved to the Liverpool Plains for work after growing up on a dairy farm in Dorrigo. He started out with NSW Railways on February 1, 1955 as a shop boy and lived at Mrs Faulkner’s boarding house. He officially came off the roster at Werris Creek Regional NSW TrainLink depot on Saturday 24 April 2021. Peter’s innings on the railway came to 66 years, two months, 3 weeks and 3 days. It would take a very thorough search of the archives to find anyone who had a longer period of service on the NSW railways. Workmates and colleagues of Mr Sawtell, gathered at Werris Creek Bowling club on April 27, 2021 to farewell their comrade and to share some good railway yarns. Mr Sawtell said he earnt “12 pounds 2 and six pence a fortnight” and worked Monday to Friday from 7.30am to 3.30pm. His tasks included picking up waste, collecting dirty rags used by the fitters, and cleaning the tanks of the steam trains. “You climb down inside and take a little dust pan and broom and sweep them out. It was usually about 100 degrees,” he said. After a few years, Mr Sawtell progressed to a call boy. “I used to go round on a pushbike around town and call the men for work, mostly of a night-time between 6pm and 6am,” he said. He said it was “a good job” and he received more money. Eighteen months later, he moved up the ladder to become a “cleaner”. “You used to rub the [trains] down with black oil. You were pretty dirty when you were finished,” he said. About two years later, Mr Sawtell

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was promoted to acting fireman and started travelling on the trains to towns including Narrabri, Muswellbrook and Armidale. “I used to shovel the coal and kept the steam up for the driver,” he said. He said sometimes the coal supply near the shovelling place in the tender would run out, so he’d have to climb into the tender and shovel it forward, and “this is while you were moving”. From there, Mr Sawtell graduated to a permanent fireman and then went on to become an acting driver. “I didn’t find it difficult; a lot of people do. You just get the hang of it. Some people have got it and some people haven’t,” he said. About a year later, in the early 1960s, Mr Sawtell became a fully fledged driver. About this time, he met Bev Baker during a game of squash. She had moved from Barraba to Quirindi to work as a nurse at the hospital. They married in 1963 and raised seven children. Over the years, Mr Sawtell has watched trains evolve from steam to diesel to electric. “I like the change. It was a bit challenging,” he said. Mr Sawtell said if trains broke down these days, “you’ve got to be able to fix them on the way now”, and time was of the essence. “They seem to have more focus on that now. You run to a pretty tight schedule because of all the other trains,” he said. Among the pearls of wisdom he has to offer is the motto: “if you’re not sure, put the brake on”. At the time of his 65 year service milestone, Mr Sawtell was one of the longest-serving drivers with NSW Railways and still worked

Peter Sawtell receiving his recognition for 65 years service in February 2020. about 90 hours a fortnight. “They call me number one - most senior in state,” he said. The train driver’s one stipulation has always been that he lives in Werris Creek. “They wanted me to move around but I wanted to stay in the one place,” he said. Mr Sawtell has been described as “quite a character” and is known for his sense of humour, but said “no matter what job you do, you make friends, you make enemies”. When Australian Community Media asked him why he stuck around, he simply said: “I just like being a driver. You’re always going somewhere. Every trip’s different”. This basis for this story is drawn from ‘Number one’ driver celebrates 65 years with NSW Railways which first appeared on Namoi Valley Independent. Reproduced with the kind permission of The Northern Daily Leader

RAIL & ROAD June 2021


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RTBU Holiday Park at Jervis Bay RTBU Members can also take advantage of the United Services Union’s Riverside Resort at Port Macquarie The RTBU and USU have a reciprocal arrangement where members of each union can book holidays at the two locations, at member discounted rates. The USU owns the Riverside resort, in a glorious location on the Hastings River at Port Macquarie on the north coast of New South Wales. The resort consists of a Motel and a Caravan Park. Stay in comfort at the holiday resort and enjoy great discounts and great style while relaxing in what many say is the best climate in Australia. No matter what type of holiday you are after your needs are covered. Lots to do any time of the year! There are a lot of attractions in the area for you and your family – have a great game of Putt-Putt golf or try Jet boating, Parra Sailing, Waterslides, Wave Bowling & Lawn Bowls which are all within walking distance. And don’t forget the fishing! Please note – there are no tent sites at the Port Macquarie Caravan Park. You can contact the motel or caravan park by calling the Riverside Resort on 02 65849155 or check the website at www.riversideresortatport.com.au You can also call the United Services Union’s Head Offi ce on 02 9265 8211 for more information. Members must provide proof of identity plus their RTBU membership card at the time of arrival at United Services Union Jervis Bay or Port Macquarie or full rates will apply.

Located in the Booderee National Park, the RTBU Holiday Park at Jervis Bay, is just a 3 hour drive south from Sydney, but a world away… Each of the 14 self-contained cabins sleep up to a maximum of 6 people. Cabins have a queen sized bed, two single beds and a set of double bunks. You will need to bring your own sheets as only mattress protectors, quilts and pillows are supplied. The cabins contain a digital television, an oven, microwave, fridge, crockery, cutlery, glassware, pots and pans as well as basic cooking utensils. Make sure you come prepared as the closest grocery shop is in Vincentia, a 30 minute drive away. The RTBU Holiday Park facilities available to all guests include a Boat Ramp, Undercover Bar-B-Q area with seating, Tennis Court and a Coin Operated Laundry. There are various swimming spots to enjoy and natural areas to explore, suitable for all the family. Kangaroos, possums, wallabies, kookaburras, bandicoots, echidnas and rosellas visit the grounds of the Holiday Park daily. Enjoy fishing for whiting, flathead and bream from the calm shores or take a quick walk to experience beach fishing for tailor and salmon on the pristine Bherwerre Beach. Bookings can be made by telephoning the RTBU Office on (02) 9264 2511.

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In the Dhurga language, Booderee means “Bay of Plenty” and the area is the home to the people of Wreck Bay. The Booderee National Park has the only Aboriginal owned Botanic Garden in Australia. The gardens are well known for providing a centre for interpreting plants used by the local aboriginal people. The Park is also home to 200 species of birds, over 30 different native mammals including 10 species of bats, 37 reptiles, 17 amphibians and at least 180 species of fish. The White-Bellied Sea Eagle is a special bird at Booderee as it is the guardian of the Koori people of Wreck Bay and features on the Booderee National Park logo. Within the Booderee National Park you will find beautiful white sandy beaches at Green Patch, Murrays, Steamers, Caves and Bherwerre. Bherwerre is home to some of the Boderee National Parks rarer seabirds. Pods of bottle-nose dolphins are often spotted playing in the waves at the Sussex Inlet Entrance and Humpback whales have been known to enter the protected areas close to shore.

Like Us on Facebook RTBU Holiday Park Jervis Bay RAIL & ROAD June 2021


CHANGE OF DETAILS FORM CHANGE OF PERSONAL DETAILS Surname

Given Name(s)

Gender Male Female

Street Address

Suburb

Post Code

Home Telephone Number

Work Telephone Number

Date Of Birth

Mobile Number

Email (work) Email (home)

Employer

Employee Number

Occupation: Eg Train Driver

RTBU Member Number

Work Location/ Depot

Date Commenced

Employment Status Fulltime

CHANGE IN BANKING DETAILS IMPORTANT Members need to specify the date of their next pay so that when the membership fee debit occurs on a Friday there is sufficient money in the account to ensure the transaction is not dishonoured which results in you then being charged an additional fee by your bank.

Part time

Casual

Next Pay Week

DETAILS OF BANK ACCOUNT TO BE DEBITED Name of Financial Institution (Bank)

Branch where account is held

Account in the name(s) of Bank/State Branch Number: (BSB Six Digits)

Account Number (Maximum of 9 digits)

DETAILS OF CREDIT CARD TO BE DEBITED Credit Card Type: Eg Visa, MasterCard, AMX

Credit Card Number

Credit card in the name of

Expiry Date

I/We authorise and request the Australian Rail Tram and Bus Industry Union, until further notice in writing to arrange for my/our account described in this direct debit authority, to be debited with any amounts which the debit user may properly debit or charge me/us through the direct debit system. I/We authorise and request this direct debit authority to remain in force until cancelled, deferred or otherwise altered in accordance with this service agreement. SIGNATURE

SUBMIT

DATE Please Email your completed form to nswho@rtbu-nsw.asn.au by using the submit button Post: Level 4, 321 Pitt Street, Sydney NSW 2000 or Fax: 02 9261 1342 • Tel: 02 9264 2511


MEMBERSHIP APPLICATION FORM Surname

Given Name(s)

Gender Male Female

Street Address

Suburb

Post Code

Home Telephone Number

Work Telephone Number

Date Of Birth

Mobile Number

Email (work) Email (home)

Employer

Employee Number

Date Commenced

Occupation: Eg Train Driver

Work Location/Depot

Employment Status Fulltime

Part time

Casual

the undersigned, hereby apply to become a member of the I, Australian Rail, Tram and Bus Industry Union, an Organisation of employees registered under the Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Act 2009 as amended, and hereby undertake to comply with the Rules and By-Laws for the time being of the Union. Signature of Applicant

Dated

I, the undersigned, hereby apply to become a member of the Rail, Tram and Bus Union of New South Wales, an Organisation registered under the Industrial Relations Act 1996 (NSW) as amended, and hereby undertake to comply with the Rules and By-Laws for the time being of the Union. Signature of Applicant

Dated

via DIRECT DEBIT fortnightly OR 1. I agree to pay $ CREDIT CARD fortnightly. or any other amounts as may be determined from time to time in accordance with the Rules of the Union. I certify that I have received a copy of Rule 14, Notification of Resignation From Membership. 2. I/We authorise and request the Australian Rail, Tram and Bus Industry Union, until further notice in writing to arrange for my/ our account described in this direct debit authority, to be debited with any amounts which the debit user may properly debit or charge me/us through the direct debit system. 3. I/We authorise my employer to notify the Australian Rail, Tram and Bus Industry Union of any change of address during my employment. 4. I/We authorise and request this direct debit authority to remain in force until cancelled, deferred or otherwise altered in accordance with this service agreement. Signature of Applicant

Dated

DETAILS OF THE ACCOUNT TO BE DEBITED

Account Name OR Name on Credit Card Financial Institution Branch

Date of next pay

IMPORTANT Members need to specify the date of their next pay so that when the membership fee debit occurs on a Friday there is sufficient money in the account to ensure the transaction is not dishonoured which results in you then being charged an additional fee by your bank.

Bank/State Branch No. (BSB)

Card Type

Account No./If Credit Union Membership No.

MasterCard

Visa

Expiry Date

/

Credit Card Number

SUBMIT

Please Email your completed form to nswho@rtbu-nsw.asn.au by using the submit button Post: Level 4, 321 Pitt Street, Sydney NSW 2000 or Fax: 02 9261 1342 • Tel: 02 9264 2511


IMPORTANT PLEASE KEEP THE FOLLOWING FOR YOUR REFERENCE

4. A notice delivered to the Branch Secretary shall be deemed to have been received by when it was delivered.

RESIGNATION FROM MEMBERSHIP

5. A notice of resignation that has been received by the Union is not invalid because it was not addressed and delivered the Branch Secretary.

OF THE RTBU 1. A member may resign from membership of the Union by written notice addressed and delivered to the Secretary of his/her Branch. 2. A notice of resignation from membership of the Union takes effect:– (a) where the member ceases to be eligible to become or remain a member of the Union (i) on the day on which the notice is received by the Union or (ii) on the day specified in the notice, which is a day not earlier than the day when the member ceases to be eligible to become a member, whichever is later; or (b) In any other case:– (i) at the end of two weeks; or (ii) on the day specified in the notice: whichever is later. 3. Any subscriptions, fees, fines and levies owing but not paid by a former member of the Union in relation to a period before the member’s resignation took effect, may be sued for and recovered in the name of the Union in a Court of competent jurisdiction, as a debt due to the Union.

6. Resignation from membership of the Union is valid even if it is not affected in accordance with this Rule, if the member is informed in writing by or on behalf of the Union that the resignation has been accepted.

What happens if I get pregnant, sick for an extended period or take leave without pay? If you are on unpaid maternity leave, sick or are off work for a substantial period of time you can seek to have your membership fees suspended until you return to work by giving written notice addressed and delivered to the Secretary of his/her Branch under Clause 11 (8): (8) Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions of this Rule, should any member during any financial year be without pay owing to ill health or to other causes which a Branch Executive regards as warranting special consideration, then the Branch Executive may grant the member exemption from payment of all or any contributions imposed in accordance with the Rules for all or part of the period during which he/ she is without pay. During the period of the exemption, the member shall be deemed to be financial.

The Rail, Tram & Bus Union is bound by the Privacy Act and your information can only used for RTBU processes and cannot be used for any other purposes.

The RTBU Executive, Officers and Staff wish all members and their families

L

AM AND

S

R AI

BU

Level 4, 321 Pitt Street Sydney NSW 2000

TR

Tel (02) 9264 2511 Fax (02) 9264 1342 E-mail nswho@rtbu-nsw.asn.au Website www.rtbu-nsw.asn.au

UN

ION


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